ISSS may authorize a reduced course load or, if necessary, no course load, due to a student's temporary illness or medical condition for a period of time not to exceed an aggregate of 12 months per academic degree level.

  • Medical RCLs can only be authorized one semester at a time.
    • If a student would like to request a medical RCL for more than one semester, s/he must submit an updated request each semester and ISSS must reauthorize the medical RCL.
  • The medical RCL must be approved by ISSS prior to a student reducing his/her course load.

Requesting a Medical Reduced Course Load (RCL)

To substantiate the illness/medical condition, the regulations require student’s requesting a medical RCL to submit documentation from one of the following U.S.-licensed medical practitioners:

  • U.S.-licensed Medical Doctor (MD);
  • U.S.-licensed Doctor of Osteopathy (DO); or
  • U.S.-licensed Clinical Psychologist (CP).

A letter from a practitioner other than one of the medical professionals noted above or a medical practitioner who is not licensed in the U.S. is not sufficient for the purposes of complying with the federal regulations.

Letter Requirements

In order for ISSS to authorize a reduced course load for medical reasons, ISSS must receive a letter from a U.S.-licensed medical professional as noted above that specifically documents the medical issue. The documentation must be submitted to ISSS and approved by ISSS before a student can drop below full-time for a medical reason:

  • Letter from a licensed U.S. medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist addressing the medical need for the RCL.
    • Letter must be printed on clinic/health care facility letterhead;
    • Letter should indicate the student’s full name; the illness/ medical condition and how it impacts the student; the duration or treatment/recovery; the impact on the student’s ability to maintain full-time enrollment; a recommendation for a reduced course load or no course enrollment; the basis of the recommendation, and the requested start date (month/day/year of the reduced course load);
    • Letter must specifically indicate the qualifying medical professional’s title (e.g., medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist)
    • Letter must include an original signature from the licensed medical doctor; doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist recommending the medical RCL